“Sahyung! Woahhhhhhh! Sahyung! Sahyunggg!”
The disciples of Mount Hua rushed to Baek Cheon, who was making his way down.
“You won! You won!”
“Insane! You defeated Jin Geum-Ryong!”
Baek Sang was the first to embrace Baek Cheon as he burst into tears,
“Sahyung…. Sahyung…. Auk….”
Baek Sang couldn’t hold back his tears.
How Baek Cheon had almost pushed himself to death in order to defeat Jin Geum-Ryong. Baek Sang was the one who had placed the most trust in him, so Baek Sang couldn’t hold back his tears.
Baek Cheon smiled softly,
“I came back after a nice win. Why are you crying? You should be congratulating me.”
“Yeah, for real…. congratulations…. Sahyung.”
Baek Cheon nodded and then grabbed the hand of Baek Sang and shook it.
His wrist throbbed. The pain he had forgotten during the fight had begun to creep back into his body, yet, Baek Cheon still smiled.
‘Now, even the pain feels good.’
He had finally climbed past the wall, which had seemed impossibly tall.
For Baek Cheon, this was the most important fact over anything else.
“I need to treat you.”
Yu Yiseol grabbed Baek Cheon with a calm face. But anyone who knew her could see that the corners of her lips, which were normally in a straight line, were subtly raised.
Baek Cheon defeated Jin Geum-Ryong.
This did not only mean that the battle between the two brothers had come to an end. It meant that Mount Hua, which was seen as the lower sect, had finally leaped over the Southern Edge Sect.
“Really… you did well, sahyung.”
Baek Cheon shook his head quietly,
“If it weren’t for you all, I wouldn’t have been able to do anything by myself. All thanks to you.”
The disciples of Mount Hua all looked at each other and smiled.
This burning feeling…
“You are smiling?”
… it cooled down in an instant.
The eyes of the disciples of Mount Hua turned to one side at once. Chung Myung was walking toward them.
‘Why is he mad again?’
‘We won. We won!’
‘He is crazy. We need to back off!’
Chung Myung, who came in close, looked at Baek Cheon,
“You are smiling?”
“If you had fought well, you could have won without being hurt. Even with that cut on your hand, you can smile?”
Baek Cheon’s face contorted with those words,
“Still, this much damage isn’t that…”
“Isn’t huge? Oh my, what a world! The damage to your hand isn’t such a big thing, huh? With only some damage to their branches, would the trees still be able to stand so tall?”
Baek Cheon looked around, asking for help, but each of the sajaes he looked at rushed to avoid his gaze.
‘You damn bastards!’
No respect for their sahyung?
Warm home? My ass!
This is shit!
The same people who cheered for him a moment ago were now slowly retreating back.
“I told you to keep your calm, but what do you do despite me saying that? I’d rather go and read some sutras to the fucking cows! Even the cows listen well! Oh my! What do I do with you people? Just what!”
It felt like their ears would bleed. More than Baek Cheon’s hand, which was still throbbing.
Does nagging make one move forward?
Baek Cheon wanted to beat his former self, who almost gave away the fight. It was a time when he was seriously thinking about how to get away from this situation.
Chung Myung stopped his nagging and looked at Baek Cheon.
And he opened his mouth and said,
“Still, you did well.”
“Anyway, the result is what matters. If you broke the sword of the Southern Edge Sect, you did well.”
“… did you eat something bad?”
“I will go get my money.”
Chung Myung waved his hand and walked to the gambling stall. Looking at his back, Baek Cheon widened his eyes.
‘What is with that guy…’
If it were normal, he would keep nagging until their ears were bleeding, but he ended it there?
Baek Cheon nodded to the sajaes, who were greeting and applauding him again.
-You did well.
After three years, he finally praised him.
It was cold.
Unlike the cheers below, there was only silence at the podium with the sect leaders. No one could speak.
It wasn’t just because of the outcome of the spar.
Of course, the fact that Mount Hua’s Baek Cheon had defeated Southern Edge’s Jin Geum-Ryong was surprising.
However, the reason the sect leaders were silent wasn’t because of that outcome.
Heo Do Jinin looked at Baek Cheon, surrounded by his sahyung and sajaes with sunken eyes.
Of course, this wasn’t the first time they had seen the Plum Blossom Sword technique of Mount Hua. Didn’t they already congratulate Mount Hua’s sect leader for being able to get back his sect’s martial arts?
However, recovering lost martial arts and regaining its true essence were two different things. Baek Cheon had now proved that Mount Hua didn’t just get the shell of Mount Hua’s martial arts but regained the true essence of the sect.
In other words…
‘It must mean that the plum blossoms of Mount Hua, which commanded the world, have returned.’
Something they couldn’t understand.
If you can realize the true meaning of one’s martial arts and use it at the same level as in the past, then why was a teacher’s existence even necessary?
Martial arts, which represent the prestigious sects, were complicated. Therefore, even if it was one of the best in the world, it wasn’t easy to understand and teach it.
‘Then did someone teach the Plum Blossom Sword technique to them?’
But by what means and who taught that martial art which had disappeared for years?
Heo Do Jinin bit his lip.
‘Anyway, one thing is certain.’
If that martial art has been fully restored, then the world would not be able to ignore Mount Hua. And maybe…
‘They can go against anyone in the world.’
A great sense of crisis came onto him.
It was because they had a feeling that this competition they were in, the one where they called Mount Hua a Taoist Sect, was shattered, emerging as something different.
Heo Do Jinin slowly turned his head and looked at the expressions of the other sect leaders.
Maybe he wasn’t the only one thinking that; most of the sect leaders were staring at Baek Cheon with serious faces.
‘You almost lost your soul at the sight.’
Southern Edge’s Jong Rigok looked so shocked that he hadn’t even shut his mouth.
Jin Geum-Ryong was known to be their best and most anticipated by the world, and his sect leader was also proud of this. Since he had now been defeated by the Righteous Sword of Hua and not even Mount Hua’s Divine Dragon, could he handle the shock?
In particular, Mount Hua and Southern Edge were known to have a tough relationship, and it was known that when one died, the other would rise.
So this devastating defeat by the disciples of Mount Hua in a place full of other people watching would be an irreversible blow to the sect. The sect leader looking lost was only to be expected.
On the other hand, Hyun Jong, Mount Hua’s sect leader, was looking at his disciples.
Heo Do Jinin smiled.
‘Such an interesting person.’
Rather, if Hyun Jong had sat too tall and smiled, maybe Heo Do Jinin would have hated him. It was hard to hate someone who looked so innocent and genuinely touched by his disciples’ actions.
‘Mount Hua. Mount Hua, huh… how far will you go?’
Yoon Jong and Jo Gul were shocked,
“Y-You cannot participate?”
When Yoon Jong shouted, shocked, Hyun Sang nodded and said,
“The veins in his muscles aren’t fully damaged, but if he overdoes it, he will have problems in the later stages of life.”
Jo Gul seemed shocked.
He had defeated Jin Geum-Ryong. He finally broke through the wall, and his skills were finally blooming, but now he had to abstain from the rest of this competition? What was this?
“Is there no other way?”
“There are countless ways.”
To Jo Gul, who earnestly wanted answers, Hyun Sang said,
“But there is no way that they wouldn’t leave aftereffects on the wrist. With such words, you understand, right?”
Jo Gul, who wanted to say something, went silent. He knew that what Hyun Sang said was right. But he regretted it,
Jo Gul looked at Baek Cheon with worried eyes.
Baek Cheon spoke in a calm voice,
“Then I will abstain.”
Both Yoon Jong and Jo Gul looked shocked at Baek Cheon, who was smiling,
“This is unavoidable.”
“I don’t regret it.”
He shook his head and asked the two,
“Why are we here?”
When they didn’t answer, Baek Cheon answered for them,
“We are not here to win. We are here to show the world the sword of Mount Hua and that we haven’t fallen. So… I did my job.”
“Now the rest is up to you.”
Looking at Baek Cheon smiling like he had no regrets, the two of them nodded their heads.
Strangely, Baek Cheon looked a lot bigger to them now,
“Of course, if I hadn’t been injured, I’d have tried to get a little more results, but this is unavoidable.”
Baek Cheon turned his head at the voice which had just entered. It was Yu Yiseol who was looking at him with an indifferent face,
“Even if you weren’t injured, this is how far sasuk would go.”
Baek Cheon frowned at her words,
“… are you saying that my skills aren’t good enough?”
Yu Yiseol shook her head,
“It isn’t that.”
“The person who wins the next spar is sasuk’s opponent.”
Yu Yiseol pointed to her back.
“The one winning that will spar with that man.”
She pointed to Chung Myung, who was counting money.
“Yes. That one.”
Baek Cheon, who stared at him, looked at Yu Yiseol and smiled, a smile saying that he wouldn’t have to do something troubling now,
“…the regrets disappeared right away.”
“It wouldn’t have made any sense.”
No, it might be better to get out of there than to face that crazy guy on the stage.
-Hoooo? How dare you draw your sword against me?
Baek Cheon’s body trembled at the thought of Chung Myung saying that to him.
“I don’t know, maybe it is a good thing.”
“… better to walk out clean.”
It was then,
“What are you talking about?”
Yoon Jong looked back in surprise.
‘When did he come?’
Chung Myung stood next to them with the sack of money. It took a second for the guy to collect his money and then count it.
“Ah, nothing, just the next spar is yours.”
“Ah, is that so?”
Chung Myung nodded and set the sack on the ground,
“Take care of this.”
“And my opponent….”
Chung Myung scratched his chin as he heard it.
“I think we have beaten the Southern Edge Sect quite a lot, but they keep getting tangled with us. Haha, although this is the relationship between Mount Hua and Southern Edge, this is too much.”
“Will you get it done easily?”
“There is nothing easy or laid back in my dictionary!”
Chung Myung looked at them.
“If you take things laid back, one can get stabbed with even a broom! And even an idiot can cut me down with a sword in hand! It is the same whether it is a man or woman!”
Seeing Chung Myung burn with passion Baek Cheon smiled.
‘For the first time, thank you, Jin Geum-Ryong.’
Realizing that he had almost made his way to fight this man, Baek Cheon felt thankful to his brother.
Seeing Jin Geum-Ryong brought down from the stage, the disciples of Southern Edge turned pale.
Jin Geum-Ryong had lost.
Not anyone else but Jin Geum-Ryong.
And this defeat felt different to their sect, waves of emotions that couldn’t be compared to the cheers of Mount Hua.
No one would deny that Jin Geum-Ryong had the greatest chance to become the Best in the World. Among the second-class disciples of Southern Edge, he was like a master. Wasn’t he the one who managed to let the Southern Edge Sect keep its name with his overwhelming talent and effort?
But he was defeated by Baek Cheon, not Chung Myung, and this was even more shocking to them.
Almost all the disciples began to panic.
Feeling the atmosphere fall down, Lee Song-Baek closed his eyes.
‘It is finished.’
This cannot be changed.
The defeat of Jin Geum-Ryong was not a simple matter.
As long as the Twelve Movement Snow Flower Sword was broken, no disciple of Southern Edge would raise their sword or heads against Mount Hua.
The despair that the disciples of Mount Hua felt in the past was what the Southern Edge Sect felt now. No, it was more than despair, and they would have a hard time getting out of this.
What to do from now on?
Lee Song-Baek raised his head and looked up. And he looked at Chung Myung, already making his way up.
Lee Song-Baek, who was staring at him, then said,
“… I will go.”
He could feel the helpless eyes of the disciples behind him.
No words could continue, but it wasn’t tough to guess what would come next.
Rather, why don’t you just abstain?
He understood that the loss of Jin Geum-Ryong hit the Southern Edge sect too hard, and the fact that Lee Song-Baek couldn’t win against Chung Myung was also known.
Their words meant that it would be better to step back than to show a defeated form to so many people.
And it did make sense, but.
Lee Song-Baek walked forward with a calm face.
Right. Maybe this was a stupid action.
‘He who doesn’t know to walk ahead will not be able to grow.’
His steps were straight for Chung Myung.
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